Alzheimer's Disease in extended family also increases risk for the disease

According to a March 14, 2019 article in MedPage Today, a recent study shows that “Alzheimer's disease risk rose when individuals had first-, second-, or third-degree relatives with the disease, an analysis of genealogy and death certificates in Utah found.”

The risk doubled if a person had both a first-degree relative (parent or sibling) and a second-degree relative (grandparent, aunt, uncle, or a sibling who shared one parent) who had the disease, according to Lisa Cannon-Albright, PhD, of the University of Utah in Salt Lake City, and colleagues.”

Alzheimer’s Disease only in a third-degree relative also increased risk.

The study, “Relative risk for Alzheimer disease based on complete family history” was published in the Journal Neurology on March 13, 2019. The objective of the study was to see if considering the full family history might improve the accuracy and usefulness of risk estimates.

The study concluded that “inherited genetic factors have a broad influence, extending beyond immediate relatives.”